Tom Brady and LeBron James are probably the two biggest modern day superstars in their sports, and so when Brady retired, LeBron was left shocked.
The NFL GOAT had originally planned to play till he was 45 (at least), and at 44 years old, the NFL world wasn’t expecting a retirement after this season.
However, after the Bucs loss to the Rams in the divisional round, rumors and reports started to fly that Brady might finally be hanging it up. In fact, Ian Rapoport reported the news days before Brady officially announced that he was done.
It was an emotional moment for the entire NFL as the player who had dominated the game for so long was now gone. Brady was an inspiration to so many, and the kind of career he had is truly something you’ll see only once in a generation.
However, 40 days in, the NFL GOAT decided he couldn’t stay away from the field for too long and announced that he’d be coming back.
— Louise Howard (@louise01067) March 29, 2022
LeBron James was upset when Tom Brady left the game
Brady’s retirement at the time marked the end of perhaps the greatest career by any NFL player. He won seven Super Bowls (more than any NFL franchise in history), held records for passing yards and touchdowns (both in the regular and postseason), had the most wins by any quarterback, five Super Bowl MVPs, and a whole slew of other accomplishments.
He is the undisputed GOAT. Brady’s crowning moment probably came in Super Bowl 51 when he led the Patriots to the largest comeback in Super Bowl history, willing the team back from down 28-3 in the third quarter.
Brady’s other biggest accomplishment comes in the form of his tenure in Tampa Bay. In his very first year, Brady won a Super Bowl under a completely new system, shutting up people who saw him as a product of head coach Bill Belichick.
That season also showed that age had no effect on Brady. If he could get it done at 43 years old, then playing a few more seasons would definitely be possible. He showed that much last year, setting a career high in passing yards while throwing for the second most touchdowns of his career.
LeBron is in a similar place in his career where he’s dominating despite getting up there in age. Currently at 37 years old, LeBron is leading the league in scoring while carrying an absolutely horrid Lakers roster who might not even make the play-in tournament.
So, when Brady retired, it really hit LeBron as Brady has always been someone he’s looked up to.
“I personally was just so in shock when I saw it,” LeBron noted. “I was one of the ones who didn’t say anything when the first, initial announcement came out. I didn’t retweet anything, say anything because I wanted to hear it come from him. Then when he came out with his announcement, I was like… You know?
“As a guy who’s kind of been my motivation factor over the last few years, seeing what he’s able to do at his age and always kind of being a leader of a team.
“Even at his age, people still gravitate towards him and gravitate towards his energy, and how he prepares and things of that nature.
“So, a small piece of me definitely left when Brady decided to retire, that’s for sure.”